Nevada Judges Ignore State Constitution
- J.A.I.L. News Journal
Los Angeles, California July 13, 2003
Review Journal, 7/13/03
EDITORIAL: Ignoring the State Constitution....Ten years ago, the Nevada Supreme Court struggled with internecine squabbling and backroom politics that undermined the public's belief in its ability to impartially mete out justice.
After a face-lift over the past few years, the court regained the public trust ... until now.
On Thursday, the justices handed down one of the strangest and potentially destructive rulings in the history of the state. In an illogical and stunningly sophomoric ruling, they voted 6-1 to void a section of the State Constitution they unwisely deemed inconvenient. After lawmakers failed to reach a compromise on imposing the largest tax increase in state history, the justices ruled legislators could ignore the constitutional protection that demands a supermajority for tax hikes. A simple majority would do.The justices called the supermajority protection from increased taxes a "procedural" provision that in a bind could be ignored. They then told the Legislature to go back to work and, if they like, raise taxes and/or create new taxes with a simple majority, instead of the constitutionally required two-thirds majority. In other words, they gave a green light to the Legislature to levy taxes against the citizens of Nevada.In one boneheaded ruling, these six Supreme Court justices have not only thumbed their noses at the 70 percent of Nevadans who voted twice to put the supermajority into their Constitution, they have created great uncertainty about the sanctity of all provisions in the document. What other parts of the constitution are "procedural" or inconvenient?....Six members of the state's highest court have ruled that restraints on government power in the State Constitution may be disregarded if they inconvenience lawmakers. That is so outrageous and so offensive, voters who feel strongly about the integrity of the State Constitution have little choice but to consider efforts to strip these justices of their seats.....When judges decide they are free to ignore constitutional stipulations with which they disagree, we all become defenseless against the arbitrary and capricious use of state power.To those familiar with politics, it is very common for certain measures and actions to require a super-quorum. For instance, our very own U.S. Constitution requires a 2/3rds vote in order to enact treaties, (Article II, Sec. 2, Clause 2), and a ratification of 3/4 of the states in order to make Amendments to our U.S. Constitution, (Article V). Can these constitutional requirements be disposed of by the courts by merely calling them "procedural points?"One thing that is becoming more and more apparent to all is that there must be installed in our system of justice some sort of checks and balances that rise above and beyond the realm of politics. We are confident that J.A.I.L. is the only means of filling that need, and that without J.A.I.L., politics will continue the slide of America down the slippery slope to her demise. To those who listen, there is heard a cry from across this Land for J.A.I.L., for only J.A.I.L. will cure the problem.How does J.A.I.L. escape common politics? Because by its operation, it provides for only common citizens drawn by lottery, to sit for a limited time, in the seat of judgment over the process and procedures of those who sit in final judgment over all matters. It is inevitable that J.A.I.L. will one day dominate over all politics in this country.
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